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[Clever Song Lyric About Dignity]
The shame in your defeat
forsunrise wrote in pandoraheartsdr
Gil has been in this strange place for a little while, now, but he hasn’t ventured out very far. Given that the first person he ran into here was a Break and the first time he dared go outside after that a bleeding Elliot just about dropped on him, he hasn’t quite had the nerve. So he’s been keeping within the boundaries of the kitchen and the bedroom Break found for him, quietly hoping to be sent home, until this morning.

Then it finally occurred to him that if an Elliot could appear out of nowhere so could an Oz.

So he’s outside now, on some sort of personal Oz patrol and familiarizing himself with the grounds. It’s an uneventful venture until he steps on a flower and it shrieks at him.

“What --” Stumbling backwards, he steps on another one by mistake, and it screams, too; then the entire field he’s standing in joins in, and pretty soon Gilbert is prancing around trying to escape a small meadow full of yelling plants, flailing as he goes.

It is not the best day.

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Liam is standing nearby watching, and he'd love to tell him to just be careful where he steps, but with the screaming it's basically impossible. Instead he tries to wave him over, out of the flowers.

He has to admit that it is kind of entertaining.

It's a while before Gilbert notices Liam, but when he does, he steers his prancing in his general direction. After a few moments, he stumbles out of the field and slumps, hands on his legs as he tries to catch his breath.

"What in the world are those?!"

Liam hides his smile politely.

"Singing flowers. As you can hear, they are quite vocal. In that field, you have to be very careful where you step."

"That's not singing at all! That's just screaming."

And they're still at it, too. Gil restrains the urge to cover his ears; he won't give them the satisfaction.

"Yes, because these are the wild ones. One of the Breaks took singing flower bulbs and raised them, though, and they sing properly."

It's a noise Liam has gotten used to. At some point something disturbs the flowers, after all.

"It seems they're intelligent. My younger self has one that hums him to sleep, for instance."

...'One of the Breaks'. Gilbert can think of few phrases more terrifying. Just the one is more than difficult enough.

"Why would anyone actually want to..." Wait. Gil lifts his head. "Your -- younger self?"

"There's very little to actually do here, so people find their own pastimes."

This one's new, isn't he?

"The Mansion regressed my age for a week or so, and then kept the child afterward. The boy is actually me as a child."

"...it can do that?"

He's been told, of course, about a few of the pranks the mansion has pulled, but somehow they're still getting worse every time he hears of a new one. This place is crap.

"Yes. You also missed the week it turned the second floor into the Abyss."

Welcome to hell, Gilbert.

Gil opens his mouth, and then he closes it again, because all he can really think to say is an echo of his earlier words: "It can do that?"

At last, he lets it go with a muttered, "This place." Gritting his teeth, he wonders vaguely if Liam would mind if he had a cigarette, since they're outside and all. He could really use one after that bit of nonsense.

Oh, he's not even going to tell him about the shared dreams.

"It's troublesome," is what he finally settles on. "Apparently the Mansion likes to shake things up when it's bored."

Light up, Gil.

"And there probably isn't a way to keep it from getting bored, is there?"

Right. His nerves require nicotine. He digs out his cigarettes, puts one to his lips, and feels around in his pockets for his matches.

...where are his matches? They're not...in his pockets.

...

He dropped them in the flower field, didn't he?

"Cater to its whims, I'm assuming."

He watches him look for matches for a moment and shakes his head when he sees him look toward the field.

"There should be matchbooks in the kitchen. I wouldn't recommend trying to find them in that mess."

"...no. You're right." Gilbert can't really think of any reason to interact with those stupid flowers ever again, actually. "Ah -- were you...headed anywhere?"

He'd like to run off to find some of these matches, but "I need to go further my addiction to nicotine" doesn't quite seem like a polite way to excuse oneself.

He shakes his head.

"Not really. I was just taking a walk."

Liam is aware of this addiction.

"I think I'd like to have some tea, though. I can show you where the kitchen is."

"Oh, I -- know where it is. Thank you. I've...been here a little while already, actually."

He's just been, you know. Recovering. Yes.

"Ah. Just settling in and discovering the quirks of this place, then?"

He doesn't mean to be slightly amused by your dance in the flower field, Gilbert, but he's rather glad it wasn't him. He is, however, curious.

"What was happening in your world when you were brought here?"

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